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June 6, 2018 Business Technologies

Why Renew My Sage ERP or CRM Business Care Plan?

BrainSell Editorial Team
By Brainsell Editorial Team

Each year, our clients receive renewal notifications for their Sage ERP or CRM Business Care Plan. There are many businesses that consider saving a few thousand dollars by not renewing their plan. I strongly suggest that you read this before making that important decision.

WHAT IS SAGE BUSINESS CARE?

Sage Business Care was previously referred to as software maintenance. It applies only to those who have purchased a “perpetual” license for their Sage software. That is, it does not apply to those on a Sage subscription plan of any kind. For subscribers, Sage Business Care is included in your subscription fee, so this information does not apply to you.

But, if you paid a large amount of money up front for the “purchase” of your software, then Sage Business Care was included in your initial purchase price, and it must be renewed at the end of the first year. The annual fee is 21% of the purchase price of the modules for a Silver Plan or 25% for a Gold Plan. The annual fee allows Sage to develop the software, add new features, keeping it compatible with all the latest operating systems and hardware options, and provide Sage telephone support, which is included in either plan.

SHOULD I RENEW MY PLAN?

If your Sage Business Care renewal is approaching, then you have a decision to make. The risk-taker in you says that you’re willing to put your ERP or CRM system at an acceptable risk. But your business and intellectual side suggests that it is not worth the gamble.

The tiebreaker is that ERP and CRM systems are mission critical components of business operations, and Sage Business Care is insurance for that. Can you really afford to let your most important internal systems start to “rust”?

The perpetual license doesn’t have an “off” switch. You can use it “in perpetuity” as long as you can find a computer that will run it. You can stop subscribing to Sage Business Care with no consequences other than your software starts to become obsolete. And when that happens, this is the impact:

  • You are no longer eligible for Sage Product Support, even if you’d like to pay for it on a per call basis.
  • You will not be able to add additional users if those additional user licenses must come from Sage.
  • You no longer have access to any of Sage’s connected services.
  • Your staff no longer has access to the Sage Knowledgebase.
  • Your data is no longer stored in the Sage Data Cloud.
  • The availability of third-party products that work with your software will begin to narrow.
  • After too many years, it may become incompatible with the latest operating systems and peripheral hardware.

Do you want to forego those substantial benefits in return for a relatively small annual savings? If your major concern is about the impact of the renewal payment on your cash flow, Sage will make arrangements to convert the annual lump sum payment into smaller, more affordable monthly payments.

THE IMPACT OF DEVELOPER CUSTOMIZATIONS

Many Sage ERP and CRM software users have substantial customizations to their systems, which may cause them not to be able to take immediate advantage of the software updates that are an important part of the value proposition for Sage Business Care. The rationalization is that if they cannot stay on a current version of the software (because of their customizations), then they might just as well not renew their plan.

Many end-users with customizations simply continue to subscribe to Sage Business Care, and simply ignore updates, leaving their software at the current level for a few years, until a new feature comes along that is really needed. At that point, they pay their developer to marry their customizations with the latest version of the software.

If you have modifications it is recommended that you stay on Sage Business Care because the cost to reinstate your subscription could be nearly as much money as the purchase of an entirely new system. Ask your developer if they have a support plan for their customizations that includes keeping your Sage software synchronized with the latest versions.

In summary, the benefit of Sage Business Care is that it protects your software from becoming obsolete and provides it with regular upgrades that keep it compatible with all the latest tax codes, business practices and operating system environments.

Do you have additional questions about the benefits of renewing? I’d be happy to discuss your unique needs and challenges and offer advice. You can reach me at kpitt@brainsell.net, or schedule a meeting with me here.  

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